Developer eyes 100,000-Seat Race Track in NJ

The liberal tree huggers in NJ will certainly kill this project like they kill all projects. Tree hugger quote: "This billionaire's insane and destructive proposal is declaring war on LSP and on the quality of life of urban people."
The liberal tree huggers in NJ (a hardcore blue state) will certainly kill this project like they kill all projects. Tree hugger quote: "This billionaire's insane and destructive proposal is declaring war on LSP and on the quality of life of urban people."

A oval racetrack and 100,000-seat stadium are being proposed for a swath of land in and around Liberty State Park, a project its supporters say would help revive the state's economy but which park advocates call "obscene."

The mile-and-a-half track would be located where a cluster of industrial properties sit east of the New Jersey Turnpike toll booth.

The properties are surrounded by the park but are not owned by the state.

The group behind the stadium idea, called Liberty Rising, have reached out to public officials and environmental groups statewide to win support, dangling as incentives a new rail stop inside the park, new playgrounds citywide, private funding of the remediation of the contaminated, 240-acre center of Liberty State Park and a separate cricket stadium.

"This project is every bit as much a cricket project as a racetrack project," Thomas Considine, spokesman for Liberty Rising, told The Jersey Journal. "The infusion of recreational opportunities into Jersey City through this project is just really robust."

There would be 18 to 24 racing days a year at the stadium, and the rest of the time it would be open as a recreational facility for the public, Considine said.

There was a Formula One track pitched for the center of Liberty State Park years ago. This project is an entirely new proposal, Considine said. He said the plan calls for the use of about 25 acres of the park that is currently restricted to the public because of contamination.

"It doesn't touch a single blade of grass at all," he said.

Considine is pitching the stadium plan about a month after the state Department of Environmental Protection, which oversees the park, killed a marina plan for the southern end of the park and a Liberty National Golf Course expansion idea that would have taken about 20 acres of the park's Caven Point natural area. Both plans were vehemently opposed by park advocates like Sam Pesin, of Friends of Liberty State Park, and NY/NJ Baykeeper Greg Remaud. Both men oppose the stadium proposal, too.

Location of Project
Location of Project

"The racing and concert stadium traffic would have an inevitable, devastatingly negative impact on weekend public access to LSP, on tourists heading to the LSP ferries to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, on Jersey City neighborhoods, on Liberty Science Center visitors and on Turnpike extension traffic," Pesin said. "This billionaire's insane and destructive proposal is declaring war on LSP and on the quality of life of urban people."

Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop has stated he will meet with Liberty Rising soon, but he sounds lukewarm. He told ROI-NJ that Jersey City “can’t handle the traffic" and claimed that “it would change the entire park." Regardless of local opinion, the Department of Environmental Protection is the one who would need to approve or reject the project.

The plan vehemently opposed by park advocates like Sam Pesin, of Friends of Liberty State Park, and NY/NJ Baykeeper Greg Remaud. Both men oppose the race track proposal.

"The racing and concert stadium traffic would have an inevitable, devastatingly negative impact on weekend public access to LSP, on tourists heading to the LSP ferries to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, on Jersey City neighborhoods, on Liberty Science Center visitors and on Turnpike extension traffic," Pesin said. "This billionaire's insane and destructive proposal is declaring war on LSP and on the quality of life of urban people."

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